Basic Bucky Badger

  • @drgnslayr @brooksmd @Crimsonorblue22 @Jaybate and all my friends who have been supporting my tryst with the Badgers.

    Full disclaimer: I have watched college hoops since the mid 70’s. I never played basketball in any sort of an organized way, except I attended this small Bible college in Dubuque and was on the team, and actually scored two points! Nonetheless I really don’t know anything about basketball in a technical coaching analytical way. When you talk about someone playing the four or the two, I really have never learned what exactly those numbers mean. So take this for what it’s worth. I’m not coach @HighEliteMajor or @icthehawkfan316 or @ralster. I’m just a fan who generally watches the ball and not the schemes.

    If you want to watch the game, it’s on TBS, NOT CBS, but they are managing to show some college all star game on CBS today. If you want to watch the game without the fawning over Kentucky watch it on TRUtv for the Wisconsin slanted coverage. Wayne Larivee is a great play by play man who used to do the Bears but broke my heart and went to the Packers. (my sporting life is complicated!)

    It’s WIsconsin, not WEsconsin as Scott Drew keeps saying on ESPNU right now. Scott still has the deer in the headlights look he had when Bucky thrashed him last week.

    When you buy clothes at Kohl’s you are helping build the Kohl Center where the Badgers play and you are supporting America’s wealthiest Senator, Herb Kohl, the owner of the chain.

    Now for the team.

    They will speed it up more than people realize. It’s been admittedly painful the last few seasons watching them grind it out. But, it’s well publicized that they aren’t turning it over, leading the nation in that category.

    Their interior D has been a weakness, relatively, this year. But, they appear to me to be willing to give up some inside points to defend the three ball.

    The footwork of their forwards has always been something to watch. It must be a coaching point of Bo Ryan. From Mike Wilkinson to Jarred Bergren to the present with Frank Kaminsky they draw the ire of opposing fans who think they travel. This skill creates a lot of easy little layins.

    Because of this footwork they get fouled a lot. They shoot more FTS than the other team attempts, and they’re pretty good shooting FTs, although they’re slumping a bit in the tourney. Gasser led the Big1G in FT shooting, Brust was near the top, Frank was very good as was PG Jackson. Sam Decker and Nigel Hayes are relatively weak FT shooters.

    The players: Frank Kaminsky has evolved from a 6’2" guard as a junior in HS in the Chicago suburbs into a 7’ small forward. He blocks shots, makes 40% of his threes and as you saw against Arizona, has carried the team at times.

    Sam Decker. Only a sophomore he is an athletic forward who will likely be drafted when he comes out. He’s kind of a slasher, 3 ball slump this year, shut down Aaron Gordon of AZ.

    They play a three guard lineup who are all undersized. Traevon Jackson, you may remember his dad Jimmy a star at Ohio State 2 decades ago. Although he doesn’t score a lot normally, if a buzzer beating set is being played he will be the one to take the shot. He has made 5 in the last two seasons. Has a little bit of Nadir in him sometimes, leaves you shaking your head.

    Ben Brust. Amazing player. Never met a three he didn’t like. Set off a ‘controversy’ last year on the fouling when up by three against Michigan. He made a half court shot to tie them and the Badgers beat Michigan (as they almost always do). At 6’1" he has averaged nearly 5 rebounds a game the last two seasons! Has a nose for the ball. Not sure that will happen with Kentucky today and their length, especially now that Stein is playing.

    Josh Gasser (pronounced gahser). Terrific defender and decision maker. Very heady player. Back door cuts, superb three shooting, he led the league, and all league defensive player. First freshman since Magic Johnson in the Big 10 to have a triple double.

    Nigel Hayes. 6th man of the year in the Big1G. He has developed the footwork already. Has a very nice mid range jumper. Then the next time will drive to the hoop and finish and get fouled, but then will miss the FT!

    There’s a couple of other developing weapons. One was recruited by KU, Bronson Koenig who will fill Brust’s role next year. The Badgers will lose no one this year except for the growing possibility of Frank leaving. Koenig is a nice three shooter, (aren’t they all?) but hasn’t become reliable enough to garner major minutes. Duje Dukan is the son of a Bulls executive from the glory days so he grew up hanging around the locker room with the superstars. He makes some plays as well.

    They don’t really go much deeper than 8 players, a relative weakness of the team.

    I tried to find an update on this stat, but a year ago I remember hearing that they don’t give up leads in the last five minutes. It was something like once in 50 some games with a lead in the last five had his team then gone on and lost. Generally, they close games well with their excellent ball control and FT shooting.

    A weakness that nearly cost them against Arizona. This team for years has struggled to inbound the ball (especially under their own basket). They have developed a strategy of tossing the inbounds pass all the way to the back court and one of the guards chases it down.

    The coach. The accolades are numerous. He won four titles in the 90’s at UW Platteville. Has kept the Badgers in the top four of the Big1G all thirteen years on campus which is modestly impressive, but no other team can say that currently. He has the best winning percentage for any coach in the league with at least 10 years. Nice guy, people like to make fun of his looks, just like we did with Frank Martin, but the more I read about him, the more I think he is just a good guy.

    Watch if Bo feels the calls aren’t going his way. In both the Arizona game and the Oregon game the first half calls were one sided and Bo got T-d up. And as often happens, the team was fired up and came back.

    Which brings up the 2nd half. UW has been very good in the 2nd half lately. They trailed American, Oregon and Arizona in the first half by 8 or more points. Both American and Oregon were outscored by 20 or more in the 2nd half and Arizona by 4.

    I have hope for today, but not overconfidence. Kentucky struggled to beat Michigan. The Badgers lost to Michigan at home during the one slump they’ve had, but a few weeks later showed they were over their slump by thrashing Michigan at their place, we had a 25 point lead before letting them back into it before closing with a nice run. If that tells us anything I’m not sure but the Badgers will most certainly not get run out of the cavernous dome today by Kentucky. And most of America will rejoice because most of America is really tired of what Kentucky is doing to college basketball.

    Rock Chalk Badger!

  • @wissoxfan83 Nice! Yah, I’ve got Wisconsin picked to win this one too.

  • @wissoxfan83-Gotta give it up for ya’ wissox-great thread that will create a lot of buzz. I’m for the old fart, Bo Ryun, regardless of who they’d be playing-except KU. When mic’ed up after the AZ win, he was so genuine in his emotions, that he stirred many to jump in his corner. My kinda guy for sure. Plus a shot at Cal has made millions of fans outside of Kentucky hoping they make UK look as awful as possible. While there are many ways to skin the cat, a win going away would suit me just peachy. Put it away early & rest the guys for the next ensuing battle. At least that one will be on cbs. Good luck Mr Badger, we’ll all be rootin’ for ya.

  • @globaljaybird

    It was really interesting to watch the players reaction to winning the other day. The one senior Ben Brust of course had his last chance to play in the final four. He’s been a four year contributer to the team. But all he talked about was how happy he was for Bo Ryan. He wouldn’t have been at all blamed had he talked about how happy he was for himself, but he didn’t. These kids really love their coach and it shows in a lot of ways.

  • @globaljaybird I like Ryan’s comment about the one and done rule. If you didn’t hear, he said he thought OAD was when his mom told him he couldn’t have another pork chop-OAD! I also threw up in my mouth a little when coach Cal said OAD should be succeed and proceed.

  • Thanks for the scouting report Wissox and best of luck today!

  • @wissoxfan83

    Best of luck today. Nothing would pleas me more to see Wisconsin take it to Kentucky and win going away but I will settle for any type of win.

    Interesting that the #2 seed is an underdog to the #8 seed. Vegas opened with UK at -2-1/2 and it has now settle at -1 point; small but significant.

  • Sorry we let you all down :). I’m not even going to watch tomorrow night Kentucky disgusts me so much.

  • @wissoxfan83 we’re sorry for you!!!

  • @wissoxfan83

    Sorry… heck… I just caught this! But a great read none the less.

    I grew up with a neighbor from Wisconsin… he told it to me like this… “I’m from Swissconsin!”

    He told me that after he knew my family spent a couple weeks in Switzerland every summer to visit family.

    We always had conversation about cheese… I was (and am) a huge cheese lover.

    I’m still in shock that Bo didn’t figure out a better way to utilize Kaminsky. I was hoping he was get outside and pop some 3s. I felt like that was a factor, and the other factor were all those block calls going against the Badgers.

  • @drgnslayr

    Funny thing is I don’t appreciate cheese all that much!

    As for the game, it reflected the Badgers season. A team with 5 or 6 almost equal parts was on display. Others picked up the slack and we nearly defeated Kentucky with Frank scoring 8 points.

    As for the fouls, I didn’t like the first half especially. We lost Jackson almost immediately to one iffy call, and the same with our 6th man Hayes. Koenig picked up the slack though for Jackson, you can see why Self recruited him.

    I was especially fuming over a strip that Brust had later in the game. The ref who called it was screened from the action and although from his view may have thought Brust fouled him, he didn’t. The thing is with fouls, even though there were some bad calls, is that UW shot more FTs than Kentucky, the three Jackson shot were kind of a gift I thought, and, every time Bo really rode the refs they seemed to respond with some makeup calls.

    Even though Jackson has made some career buzzer beaters, I sure would have liked to see him try to find someone in that last minute. He’s usually not that reliable of a scorer.

    Oh, and why didn’t Gasser guard Harrison more closely on the tying three? Oh well!

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